Sep 04 2003

SEN. SHELBY ANNOUNCES TRANSPORTATION FUNDING FOR MOBILE AND SURROUNDING AREAS

Appropriations Committee Passes Transportation Appropriations Bill

U. S. Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Treasury and General Government announced approval of important transportation funding for Mobile.

Sen. Shelby said, "I am pleased that the bill provides significant funding for several Mobile area projects. These funds reflect our commitment to safe and efficient transportation and infrastructure."

Sen. Shelby said, "I am pleased that we were able to include a significant increase in highway funding for the State of Alabama. Alabama will receive an estimated $610 million in highway funds for Fiscal Year 2004, which represents an increase of $54.4 million from last year’s funding level."

Mobile Waterfront Terminal and Maritime Center of Gulf Ferry
Sen. Shelby said, "Our legislation provides $5 million for the purchase of a ferry to augment services at the future Maritime Center of the Gulf."

I-65 Industrial Park Access Improvements, Atmore, AL
The bill includes $500,000 for improvements to the I-65 Industrial Park by providing infrastructure to prospective employers through water and sewer facilities and road construction. Sen. Shelby, “It is my hope that this funding will spur economic development in the area.”

Saenger Theatre
Saenger Theater will receive $500,000 to assist with renovations that will allow the theatre to fulfill its arts and education missions to benefit the cities of southeast Alabama.

University of South Alabama - Center for the Study of Rural Vehicular Trauma
Sen. Shelby said, “Our bill provides $1 million to continue to the important research done at the University of South Alabama.”

State Docks
Sen. Shelby said, "The Alabama State Docks have the potential to become one of America's most economically important ports in this century because of the proximity to emerging trade routes on the Gulf of Mexico. I am pleased that the bill provides $10 million in funding to modernize this important asset to our state by constructing an intermodal containerized freight terminal." Preliminary data indicates Alabama will need to expand its current dockside facilities that handle and store containerized cargo.

Gulf Coast High Speed Rail Corridor - Crossing Improvements
Sen. Shelby said, "Our legislation provides $2.25 million for the construction of a highway-rail grade crossing separation at Hamilton Blvd. in Mobile. The funding will provide for a construction of a grade separation of CSX/US90 at Hamilton Boulevard in Mobile. This funding is important to enhance the safety of this crossing.”

Fort Morgan to Dauphin Island Ferry
The bill includes $2.5 million for the purchase of a ferry to operate between Fort Morgan and Dauphin Island. The purchase of a new ferry will provide a reliable source of transportation to the community and will help to promote economic growth in the area.

Orange Beach Senior Activity Center
The bill provides $200,000 for the acquisition of vans to improve mobility options for senior in the City of Orange Beach and surrounding areas.

Gulf Coast High Speed Rail Corridor - Corridor Planning
Sen. Shelby said, "The promise of high speed rail throughout this area could provide unprecedented economic growth and opportunity. This bill provides $1.5 million to begin planning for high speed rail service throughout the Gulf Coast area."

Statewide Bus Funding
The bill allocates $3.3 million to the Alabama Department of Transportation to distribute to local transit systems in cities and counties throughout the state to replace, upgrade, or expand transit vehicle fleets. Sen. Shelby said, “I am pleased we are able to include funding to assist the State Department of Transportation in meeting public transportation needs, replacing vehicles, and expanding service in our urban and rural communities.”